When Clyde and Rena Orr married in 1947, there was no ornate reception or ceremony. Just a simple, religious service in Harlan Kentucky with friends who loved them.
On a gorgeous Saturday afternoon, the couple renewed their vows at Shannondale Health Care Center, surrounded by three more generations of the family they started 70 years ago.
"She's the wise one in the room. I'll be the first to admit that," Clyde said.
The couple met while playing horseshoes while students at Lincoln Memorial University.
Clyde was 20 then. Rena was 17.
The two were in the same English class at LMU.
"I was very disturbed when the grades came out that quarter. He got an 'A' and I got a 'B,' and we studied together and our papers and written work were the same because we'd done everything together," Rena said. "It's been a couple from the beginning 'til now, and will be right on as long as we live."
Through the years, the Orrs enjoyed going to country music festivals and flea markets.
Country music is still a part of their marriage, and it brings a smile to Rena's face when Clyde sings.
Clyde says the secret to a successful marriage is communication.
"You have to have a great deal of respect for each other and you can't do that unless you listen to each other," Clyde said. "So we did a little more listening than we did talking."
"We've made sure that our differences were settled before we went to bed at night," Rena added. "We didn't want things to carry over to the next day."
As the couple rolls into their seventy-first year together, both say they look to each new day together.
"Why did I get the good luck to get this woman? That's the main thing I ask myself," Clyde said. "How was I so lucky to have her? And I still feel the same way. After all these years, I still feel the same way."
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